I very rarely give out a double pick on a single baseball game. It is hard enough to predict which team is going to win, let alone exactly how they are going to win it. But yesterday, I had strong opinions on both the side and the total of the game between the Colorado Rockies and the Arizona Diamondbacks. So, I broke my own rule and made yesterday’s pick a double-dip, and took the Rockies as +125 road underdogs, and the over nine and a half runs.
I was very surprised to see the DBacks as favorites, as they had lost seven straight games, including back to back games against the Rockies. And to say that I had little confidence in their starter, Robbie Ray, would be quite the understatement.
Ray has been absolutely terrible this season and is walking guys at an unprecedented rate. The embattled starter had 25 walks in 27 innings pitched heading into yesterday’s game, with an ERA of over eight runs, and to see him as a favorite against a solid Rockies team was laughable.
We’re .500 ￼at the halfway point. Through all the highs and lows, we’re riiiight there. LET’S DO THIS! pic.twitter.com/KIcHep7zUh
— Colorado Rockies (@Rockies) August 26, 2020
When Ray started the game by walking the first two batters and then giving up a two-RBI double to Nolan Arenado, I knew both sides of my bet were the right plays. Ray ended his day with six more walks and now has as many walks as he does innings pitched on the year. If you see him as a favorite again, you are going to want to fade him and fade him hard, as he just can’t find the plate right now, with seventeen walks in his last three starts.
Most of the runs didn’t come until late in this game, but when they started to come, they wouldn’t stop. The Rockies nearly blew an 8-1 lead as they allowed to score six Arizona runs in the eighth and ninth inning combined, but managed to hang on for an 8-7 victory, and we cashed out a double winner. If winning one bet is sweet, the only thing sweeter, is winning two! For today’s free daily betting pick, we will head to Milwaukee, where the Brewers will host the Reds.
Cincinnati Reds (11-17) at Milwaukee Brewers (13-15)
The Milwaukee Brewers will look to make it three straight wins over the Cincinnati Reds today in game three of a four-game series. Game three was postponed last night as the Brewers refused to take the field in the wake of the recent social unrest in Wisconsin, and the teams will play two games today, both seven-inning affairs, to make up for last night’s postponement. The Brewers are looking for the series win today, after getting swept by the dreadfully bad, Pittsburgh Pirates in their last series.
For Cincinnati, the Reds have lost four straight games and are quickly falling out of contention in the National League Central, as they now trail the Chicago Cubs by six games for the division lead. The Reds are hoping that their ace, Sony Gray, can help stop the bleeding in this series, and get them back on track, in what was once a very promising season that is quickly going up in smoke.
Starting today for the Reds is Sonny Gray (4-1 2.21 ERA), and for the Brewers, it is Adrian Houser (1-2 3.72 ERA). The game total over/under is set at six runs. The Reds are -125 road favorites. First pitch is scheduled for 2:10 PM PST from Miller Park in Milwaukee.
There are two Cincinnati Reds teams this year. The team they are when Sonny Gray and Trevor Bauer pitch, and the team they are when they don’t. When Gray and Bauer start, the Reds are 7-4. When anybody else takes the mound, they are 4-13. That is a testament both to just how good Gray and Bauer have been, and just how awful this Reds lineup has been.
If the Reds can’t count on their starting completely shutting down the opposing team, they can’t score enough runs to stay competitive. The Reds enter play tonight dead last in the Major Leagues in team batting average at just .203, and 27th in runs scored. The weak offense has managed to score runs when Gray pitches, though, as they are scoring an average of on nearly seen and a half runs in Gray’s five starts.
Sonny Gray (4-1 2.21 ERA)
Expectations were high for Sonny Gray coming into 2020, as he had a breakout year with the Reds last year, when he nearly took home the Cy Young Award in the National League. And for the most part, Gray has lived up to that ample hype, as he has been very good.
Gray is striking out hitters at an absurd rate of 12.5 per nine innings, the highest of his career. He is also walking fewer guys than last season, and his WHIP is a career-low of 0.982, one of the lowest in the National League right now, as he has been very stingy allowing base runners.
In his lone start against the Brewers this season, he pitched 5.1 innings and allowed four earned runs and picked up his only loss of the season. Last year against Milwaukee, Gray was elite, as he had a 2.45 ERA in five starts against the Brew Crew.
It is hard to not be disappointed in the Milwaukee Brewers this season. They were expected to compete at the top of the NL Central, and so far, they just haven’t been consistent enough to string together wins.
Before taking the first two games of this series, the Brewers had lost five out of their previous six games, including getting swept by a Pittsburgh Pirates team that had the lowest winning percentage in modern-day Major League Baseball history heading into their series with the Brewers.
The Brewer’s bats have been anemic, as they are 28th in the majors in batting average and on-base percentage, and 26th in runs scored. Christian Yelich, a guy that has arguably been the best player in the National League the last two seasons, is hitting just .200 and has a whopping 36 Ks in 27 games played. Yelich has just two hits in his last fourteen at-bats and needs to break out of this slump if the Brewers are going to turn things around.
Adrian Houser (1-2 3.72 ERA)
Adrian Houser looked great in his first two starts of the season. In games against the Pirates and the White Sox, Houser tossed a combined twelve innings and allowed just one earned run. But since then, he has been shaky.
In his last three starts, Houser has pitched seventeen innings and has given up eleven runs, all earned, while giving up a home run in each game. After winning his first two starts, the Brewers have lost two of his last three.
Who Do I Like?
The Reds are awful. But they are pretty good when Sonny Gray pitches. I guess something about knowing your starter is going to give you a real shot to win the game gets these hitters riled up, and they actually score some runs. And I think that is what happens in this one.
Adrian Houser has never been an elite starting pitcher, and his first two starts of the year are starting to look like a fluke. I think the Reds find a way to get at least a run or two off of him in this game, and that may be all the Reds need with Gray on the mound.
With this being a seven-inning game, and the teams playing two games today, the Reds are going to likely try and get Gray a complete game. Gray has pitched into the sixth inning or later in each of his five starts, and I think he goes the distance in this one, and again leads his team to victory.
I am taking the Reds. Gray should be able to avenge his only loss of the year, and Houser is quickly looking like the mediocre pitcher that I always knew that he was. The Reds lineup can’t be trusted, but they won’t need a lot of production to get the job done in this one. It’s a short seven-inning game, and I am going to call it a 4-2 final score, with the Reds coming out on top. Give me the Cincinnati Reds laying -125 today on the road in game one!